Homesickness is something that you associate with living away from home, even if it sometimes hits you unexpectedly it will at least be a relatively expected emotion and you will have or at least be able to build up a tolerance and coping strategies to get you through it.
Being out of the loop (OOTL) is an entirely different experience.
One of my first big OOTL experiences was a family party, I found out about said party through happy smiley ‘it’s so great, all the family is here’ Facebook pictures, after the event. I didn’t get an invite. I was angry and confused but mostly just sad. I tend to liken the feeling to when your friends at infant school suddenly leave you out of a game, at that moment it’s the end of the world and nothing but playing with your friends could possibly make you feel any better.
In trying to comfort me, and placate the ‘crappy mood me’ that just refused to leave, my husband said the words ‘out of sight, out of mind’ which clearly didn’t help the situation at the time, but were, and continue to be, completely true. Germany may as well be the moon sometimes, however much I Skype and email and Facetime with my friends and family I will always be that bit more disconnected than when I lived in the UK.
I debated telling the family how I was feeling, to, if nothing else, just ensure the situation didn’t arise again and I didn’t end up being quite such a moody nightmare so often. Against my better judgement I did raise it with them, calmly, nicely, without showing them how much it had hurt me. They didn’t get it. ‘You live in Germany, why would we invite you?’ was the only response I got, which wasn’t very helpful to me.
It’s not all bad, I now get informed about events on the day they are happening! Yes, you heard right to avoid me being upset by seeing pictures all over Facebook I now get a two hour warning of said pictures going up on Facebook, but still no invite. I know I live in Germany people, but they have these things called trains and planes and cars which can transport me pretty much anywhere in Europe for a weekend, even a day!
To counter this I have had become an organisational ninja, even if I’m not there in person you’ll get at least a card, you’ll know I’m thinking about you. I always know when birthdays are coming up, anniversaries, graduations, driving tests, I’m always thinking of you. And just in case i do ever get an invite I will jump on a plane and be there (if the funds allow).
How do you deal with being out of the loop?